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Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam projects from Lois Pawson with University of Brighton 

July 11, 2022

Some while back we posted a couple of items about the work of artist Lois Pawson on the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. The most recent of these can be found on https://omarkhayyamrubaiyat.wordpress.com/2022/01/14/new-illustrations-for-fitzgeralds-rubaiyat/. Lois has now sent us a further update on her work. We wish her all the best with her various projects. We are sorry that we are not closer to Brighton, in Sussex, UK, and so able to attend some of the events.

Illustrator Lois Pawson has focused her MA Illustration degree project about the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam and has created an illustrated book, a headscarf-hijab inspired by Persian silk tent panels, and framed original artwork. The illustrations set out to capture what remains of Omar Khayyam’s world in modern day Iran and surviving ancient Persian artefacts. Her project research included over 40 virtual guided tours of Iran and ‘method illustration’ experimenting with traditional Persian arts and crafts – including pottery, weaving, miniature painting and dance. The project is currently on display at the University of Brighton galleries at the MA Summer Show until 16th July.  

Lois A Pawson Twilight Garden Tomb of Poet Hafez – 2022

In addition Lois is running three Rubaiyat related projects this summer; a creative workshop, an instagram-based poetry project, and a university-based display case of illustrated Rubaiyat books. 

Read Write & Draw Rubaiyat Poems’ is a creative workshop taking place on Tuesday 12th July from 1pm to 4pm at University of Brighton, Grand Parade, Brighton – the event is free to attend, materials provided, and is suitable for adults with all levels of creative skill or experience. The workshop will include reading and illustrating selected quatrains – including the Book of Pots and verses with flora and fauna – and using a quatrain structure to create modern-day rubaiyat poems. 

@versebeneaththebough is a newly launched instagram-based project encouraging people to read and engage with poetry outdoors with friends and to share ‘poetry picnic pics’ on instagram. This project is inspired by 11th quatrain of The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam ‘Here with a Loaf of Bread beneath the Bough, A Flask of Wine, a Book of Verse – and Thou Beside me singing in the Wilderness -And Wilderness is Paradise enow. 

  • To follow and join-in on Instagram: @versebeneaththebough #versebeneaththebough  

Design Matters is a student-led exhibition involving MA and PhD students concerning aspects of design relating to diverse topics. As part of this project Lois Pawson is displaying a selection of 20th century illustrated Rubaiyat books from the University of Brighton collection with commentary on the responsibility of artists relating to cultural appropriation and orientalism. The ground-floor vitrine display cases will be at St Peter’s House Library at University of Brighton from 17th August to 14th October, with visitor access to the public 9am to 5pm weekdays.  

Lois Pawson contact details are as follows: Website loispawson.wordpress.com; Instagram @loispawson 

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